On a long, youngest path through the forest burned in Castle Fire, California in 2020A survey crew of six looked at a curiosity in the distance.

“We saw a small patch of white and wondered if it was snow on a distant slope,” said Nate Stephenson, a forest scientist with the US Geological Survey. On closer inspection it wasn’t snow. It was smoke coming from an iconic giant sequoia tree. “It would give off clouds of smoke,” Stephenson recalled the April 22nd sighting.

The remote control…



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